Posts tagged growth
Are You Letting the World Make You a Lesser Version?

Technology will redefine the way we work, think, and live over and over again. Industries will rise and fall, social patterns will shift, but all the while you will be at the center of your experience. This is the essential point societies have repeatedly failed to honor following past changes, most notably in regards to the disruption that followed ubiquitous smartphone use. How well you weather this chaotic new world is completely dependent on your individual self-mastery. Regardless of how much technology shifts the landscape, you are still a human, driven by a hunter-gatherer brain and hunter-gatherer needs.  

The modern mental and physical health epidemics are spurred by technology that promotes immaturity. As we rely less on ourselves we remain lesser versions. Suddenly it becomes normal for adults to have donuts or fast food for breakfast every morning, to scan social media all day and night, and to spend money they don’t have on stuff they don’t need. To transcend these patterns, we have to intentionally craft a plan for daily self-development. The 30x30 Challenge is that daily plan.

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7 Rules for Creating Empowered, Antifragile Young Adults

The new school year is here and with it come brand new hopes and dreams. Yet, success is not a destination but, rather, a path that the most fulfilled people have internalized. We all have a vested interest in this path, but especially those parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors who would like to see their protégés flourish. Our mentees simply won’t outperform our model. Your disposition becomes theirs; your energy, theirs; and, most importantly, any of your own self-limiting patterns of thought will be internalized and become theirs. Do as I say only works if we do.

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You Should Be Ashamed of Yourself

This is where the current narrative on shame has it all backwards. Just because it feels bad, doesn’t mean it is bad. Just because it hurts, doesn’t mean it’s wrong. Shame isn’t some bug in our emotional programming left over from a more primitive time. It’s not a flaw in the human condition whose eradication spells progress. It’s an alarm built into our system that serves a vital purpose. Shame is on your team and aims to help you grow. It is painful, but that is the only language it speaks to inspire change. Just as the burning sensation on your hand aims to protect you from keeping your hand in the fire, shame only wants to show the areas where you need to direct your work.

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Nobody’s Perfect: Why Relationships Depend on Making the Charitable Assumption

Even with the best of intentions, people accidentally hurt. We all put our foot in our mouth, step across the line from critique to insult, or make ill-timed or distasteful jokes. Our default position must be to never assume malicious intent. When friends, loved ones, or even a perfect stranger hurt our feelings we must assume that they were simply incompetent, ignorant to our feelings, and ill-equipped to navigate the emotional terrain.

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Feed The Right Wolf: The Undeniable Pull of Influence

We have access to the wisdoms of ages and... we have the Kardashians. How we choose to invest our attention says something about us, but even more importantly, it determines who we are becoming. Saturated in advertisement, social media, reality tv, and gossip driven news, we are literally allowing other people to turn us into who they want us to be. If these experiences dominate our conscious hours and those of the people we surround ourselves with, then who are we becoming? Our modern environment effectively brainwashes us to pursue deeply ungratifying ends that leave the masses controlled by dependency and addiction. The good news is we also have more power to change our trajectory than any time before. All the wisdom of human history is a few keystrokes away. We can move countries, change jobs, adopt new hobbies, join charities, enlist in the reserves, or begin to learn almost anything.  Now more than ever we need boundaries and intentional lifestyle design. We need to feed the right wolf!

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Friday Musings: Smarter Tools. Dumber Brains?

Humanity is reaching a point where so many tasks are outsourced and comfort is so certain that dependency has far outpaced the acquisition of new skills. Technology makes life easy, but it often discourages people from honing basic human capabilities. Smarter tools can lead to dumber brains, or, with a better approach they can scaffold our minds to heights previously unreachable.

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Stop Trick-or-Treating and Grow Up

Don’t get angry at community members for uttering the obvious: “Aren’t you too old for this?” Cue the indignant parental response: “It isn’t fair to my baby for people to ask that.” Actually it is completely fair. If your high school junior wants to dress up as Maui and ask for Twix, that’s cool. He just better be ready for some raised eyebrows. I wouldn’t get offended if the bank teller looked at me weird when I asked for a lollipop, or the mall Santa told me to get off his lap. It’s part of growing up. Still, many believe it is their role to fight all battles, thus perpetually delaying maturation. Adulthood and self-reliance, rather than exciting goals for our children, have been transformed into a dreaded expiration date that society is trying to fend off as long as possible. It is the overgrown children who pay the price.

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Stimulus and Growth

Movement and fitness parallel life. If you are not actively thinking about and trying to improve your fitness you are allowing it to deteriorate. The standard American diet, office life, and limited to non-existent movement practice that comprises a “normal” life fall far short of what true thriving requires. Like a vitamin missing from a poor diet, if you are not actively seeking novelty, modern life hardly provides enough.

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Great Expectations May Prevent Happiness

You expect to be able to drive 15 miles in 13 minutes while listening to your favorite music and enjoying perfect temperatures. We rarely stop to appreciate it, but this is truly remarkable within the scope of human history. When any one of these factors is not delivered, we are aggravated. “What the heck, spotify!”

Unrealistic expectations create unhappiness. Despite the highest standard of living in human history, anxiety, depression, drug overdoses, and suicides are each at an all-time high. Modern unhappiness does not stem from lack of luxury. Having problems doesn’t cause unhappiness. It is that we expect not to have problems, or inconveniences, that causes unhappiness.

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